The Catholic Diocese of Buffalo Wednesday released a statement clarifying why Bishop Richard J. Malone is being edited out of some versions of a Catholic training video about preventing the sexual abuse of children.
According to the diocese, the producers of the video, an Oklahoma City-based company called Virtus, had decided before August to prepare an alternative version of the training video that did not include any bishops.
"The decision was not based upon the actions of any particular bishops," the diocesan statement read. "Moreover, today each diocese has the option of using either the original version that includes statements by bishops or the one that does not."
An article in the Cincinnati Enquirer Tuesday reported that appearances by Malone and another bishop who took part in training videos were being excised from the productions.
Cincinnati diocese officials said leaders of their training program complained earlier this year that Malone and New Orleans Archbishop Gregory Aymond were in the videos. Both men have faced criticisms for their handling of child sex abuse cases in their dioceses.
The videos are used by Catholic dioceses across the country in mandatory training programs for volunteers, teachers, coaches and others who work for the church.
"The Diocese of Buffalo prides itself on its compliance with the Virtus program and its record in the protection of children," the Buffalo Diocese said in its statement Wednesday.